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Jim Devellano – Partner

Devellano

Jim Devellano became a part of the Saginaw Spirit Ownership Group in August 2016.

Devellano is known as one of the most decorated executives in sports history. In total, Devellano is the owner of 16 championship rings. Amongst his conquests are seven Stanley Cup rings (New York Islanders 1980, 1981, 1982 and Detroit 1997, 1998, 2002, and 2008) four Calder Cup Championship rings in the American Hockey League with Adirondack (1986, 1989, and 1992) and Grand Rapids (2013), two Adams Cup Championship rings in the Central Hockey League with Fort Worth in 1978 and Indianapolis 1982, and one Riley Cup Championship in the East Coast Hockey League with Toledo in 1994. Devellano also earned Major League Baseball American League Championship rings with the Detroit Tigers in 2006 and 2012.

Devellano’s career in hockey began in 1967 when the expansion St. Louis Blues hired him as an amateur scout at age 23. Devellano then moved on to the New York Islanders in 1972 and was promoted to Director of Scouting in 1974. Devellano was responsible for scouting many of the players that contributed to the Islanders dynasty in the early 1980’s as well as managing the Islanders farm team in the Central Hockey League.

In 1982, Devellano was hired by new owners Mike and Marian Ilitch as General Manager of the Detroit Red Wings. Devellano wasted little time making an impact on the franchise, selecting Steve Yzerman from the Peterborough Petes with the fourth overall pick in the 1983 NHL Entry Draft. Devellano is also credited with being the first NHL General Manager to assemble a European scouting staff in 1984. This move would produce several talented European-born players including “The Russian Five” (Vyacheslav Fetisov, Vyacheslav Kozlov, Sergei Fedorov, Igor Larionov, and Vladimir Konstantinov) Pavel Datsyuk, Nicklas Lidstrom, Tomas Holmstrom, Henrik Zetterberg, and Niklas Kronwall, all of whom heavily contributed to the Red Wings continued success over the past 25 seasons. With the help of Devellano, Ken Holland, and Scotty Bowman, the Red Wings built a team that would win four Stanley Cups four Stanley Cups over 11 seasons from 1996-2008.

Recognized for his contributions to the game, Devellano was inducted into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame in 2006 and the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2010.